How do I care for and maintain my cue?
You should also avoid exposing maple shafts to temperature and humidity extremes (e.g., by storing it in the trunk of a car kept outside). This can lead to warping, and it can also put extra stresses on the joint and ferrule with the thermal expansion and contraction of the different materials at different rates.
from RSB FAQ:
If you don’t have one, get a case that will protect your cue from humidity. Moisture is one of the main causes of cue warping. Hard cases give better protection than soft cases. Store your case upright, not lying down. If it’s a soft case, hang it on a nail in your closet.
Remember, wood will warp, especially if it’s a long, thin piece (like a cue). A slight warp is nothing to be too upset about. Just make sure you shoot with the cue in the same position every shot (i.e. turn the cue so that any warp is on the vertical plane and not the horizontal). Pick some distinctive mark on the cue that will make it easy to identify this position, or hold the butt the same way if it’s angled. If it’s a slight warp, you may be able to just bend the cue back into shape. If it’s more severe, you could consider buying a new shaft for it.
How do you measure the warp? Rolling it on a table is one way that seems like a good measure but is, in fact, not. The best way to look for straightness is by ‘sighting.’ Simply stated, just look down your cue from the butt-end like a rifle. Rotate the cue as you do this and any warp should be immediately apparent. More often than not, rolling a cue will show defects in the joint rather than the shaft, which is not a serious problem, as long as it’s a tight fit.
If you have a multi-piece cue, you might consider joint protectors. They screw onto both the shaft and butt of your cue and help prevent moisture from entering the wood at these points. The joint ends of the cue are very susceptible to moisture since they are cross-cut though the grain of the wood.
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